The voters have spoken, and while they mostly agree with the Seattle Mariners’ path of action, they’re evenly split on whether the execution of their plan has been acceptable.
This week’s Seattle Sidelines poll asked readers to weigh in on the Mariners’ roster teardown. Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto has spent the last month trading away a huge portion of last year’s team that won 89 games, dealing big-name players like Edwin Diaz, Robinson Cano and James Paxton in order to shed salary and replenish a depleted farm system. The net result is that the Mariners will likely be much worse next season, but hopefully have more pieces for building a foundation in the future.
So what do people think of what the Mariners have done? Here’s how you voted:
POLL: What’s your opinion of the Mariners’ roster teardown, which has seen Seattle trade several valuable veterans for prospects? Full context, including a look at all the trades and rumored trades, here: https://t.co/mDXiDcRqpZ
— Nick Patterson (@NickHPatterson) December 3, 2018
Add the two together and nearly 80 percent of the voters said the teardown is the right call. However, it was almost dead even on whether the return was adequate. Both the good call/bad return and good call/good return options received 39 percent of the vote, though the bad return option picked up one more vote. Just 22 percent of the voters said it was the wrong move.
Just hours after the poll was published the Mariners finalized the last two of those deals listed in the original post, which weren’t yet official. The deal with the New York Mets remained as speculated with closer Diaz, second baseman Cano and $20 million flipped for outfielder Jay Bruce, reliever Anthony Swarzak, two blue-chip prospects in outfielder Jarred Kelenic and pitcher Justin Dunn, and prospect pitcher Gerson Bautista.
Meanwhile, the deal with the Philadelphia Phillies turned out to involve more than just shortstop Jean Segura. The Mariners sent Segura and relievers Juan Nicasio and James Pazos to Philly in exchange for first baseman Carols Santana and shortstop J.P. Crawford.
So here’s the current tally:
SP James Paxton, RP Edwin Diaz, RP Alex Colome, RP Juan Nicasio, RP James Pazos, C Mike Zunino, 2B Robinson Cano, SS Jean Segura, OF Guillermo Heredia, P Michael Plassmeyer (minors), $20 million.
RP Anthony Swarzak, C Omar Narvaez, 1B Carlos Santana, SS J.P. Crawford, OF Mallex Smith, OF Jay Bruce, P Justus Sheffield (minors, blue chip), P Justin Dunn (minors, blue chip), P Erik Swanson (minors), P Gerson Bautista (minors), OF Jarred Kelenic (minors, blue chip), OF Dom Thompson-Williams (minors), OF Jake Fraley (minors).
Dipoto has taken a break since Monday, and he suggested nothing else would happen before baseball’s winter meetings get underway Sunday in Las Vegas. So we have a chance to catch our breath before speculating further about the futures of players like outfielder Mitch Haniger and starting pitcher Marco Gonzales.
It will be years before we have any idea whether it was worth it for the Mariners to conduct this teardown — Kelenic, who may be the best long-term prospect of the bunch, is only 19 and was playing rookie ball the past season. But it’s been 17 years since Seattle last experienced playoff baseball, and based on this vote it seems the majority of the fan base is willing to wait a little while longer, provided it increases the chances of the drought ending in the future.